Monthly Archives: November 2015

Mirage Unveils New Center Bar, Parlor Lounge

Mirage Las Vegas has opened its fancy-schmancy new Center Bar and Parlor Lounge after a $3.3 million renovation.

Mirage Center Bar

More schmancy than fancy, but you know what we mean.

The new Center Bar, in the center of the casino because naming things is hard, doesn’t have video poker machines, but it does have an extensive cocktail menu. Mirage is clearly speaking this blog’s love language.

Mirage Center Bar cocktails

It’s not a hangover, it’s evidence of a life fully lived. And that’s the story we’re sticking to.

Adjoining Center Bar is a new Parlor Lounge.

Fair warning, Parlor Lounge has a piano. We’re always nervous when we hear there’s a piano, as one piano is dangerously close to being two pianos, which far too often leads to dueling, one of the cruelest things ever perpetuated upon unsuspecting casino patrons, second only to appearances by celebrity restaurateur Guy Fieri.

Parlor Lounge Mirage Las Vegas

In Las Vegas, feel free to show off your piano. Doing the same with your organ is generally frowned upon.

Parlor Lounge resides in the space formerly occupied by the casino’s poker room.

A shiny, new poker room was unveiled in May 2015. Unfortunately, photos are not permitted in the poker room, so we’re unable to share the one below.

Mirage poker room

Oooh, we’re so scared of your no photography rules. What are you going to do, double belly buster straight draw us? Just try it, because we don’t even know what that is.

The changes at Mirage are many, and others are still in the works. The Beatles Revolution Lounge closed in October 2015, and is now enclosed by a construction wall.

Mirage Las Vegas

In Las Vegas, there are few things sexier than a construction wall. Yeah, we probably need to get a new hobby.

According to the signage, Mirage is in the process of building a “new dream experience” to replace Revolution Lounge. If this blog’s dream experiences are any indication, the new lounge at Mirage is likely to involve falling, flying or showing up naked at school unprepared for an exam.

How would we know? We are Las Vegas blog, not a Certified Dream Analyst, which we’re mortified to report is actually a thing.

 

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Village Seafood Buffet Closes at Rio Las Vegas, Merges With Carnival World Buffet

The only all-seafood buffet in Las Vegas, Village Seafood Buffet at Rio, has closed and relocated to the hotel’s Carnival World Buffet.

Here’s a peek over the new curtain at the former Village Seafood Buffet.

Rio Seafood Buffet

No word yet about what will replace the Village Seafood Buffet. Let’s hope it’s not what replaced McFadden’s Irish Pub. Specifically, nothing.

We couldn’t resist slipping inside the now-closed Village Seafood Buffet to bid a farewell, security breach-style.

Village Seafood Buffet

Most boring security breach, ever.

Seafood lovers are still in luck, however. The seafood buffet, or a significant part of it, has been integrated into one of the better-known buffets in Las Vegas, Carnival World Buffet.

The Carnival World Buffet now has two entrances, one devoted to the seafood buffet.

Rio Carnival Buffet

Dinner at the seafood buffet is $47.99, or $46.99 with a loyalty club card. The regular buffet is about $33 for dinner.

It seems a smart move to create the new Carnival World & Seafood Buffet. The Village Seafood Buffet got mixed reviews, but the Carnival World Buffet is one of the more beloved buffets in Vegas.

Here’s the new seafood section at Carnival World & Seafood Buffet.

Rio seafood buffet

Don’t you buffet commoners think you’re getting in here. The barrier is electrified. Or should be. Because then it would win “Best Dinner Show in Las Vegas,” easy.

Changes to the buffets follow on the heels of lots of restaurant news at Rio Las Vegas.

Martorano’s Cafe recently closed. If you have a hankering for the restaurant’s Italian fare, you can find Martorano’s at Paris Las Vegas.

As we reported first, Buzio’s Seafood restaurant will close by the end of 2015.

A new Guy Fieri restaurant, El Burro Borracho (Spanish for “Drunken Donkey”), will take the place of Buzio’s Seafood in early 2016.

It’s great to see Rio Las Vegas shaking things up.

For our money, though, the best offering at Rio is Royal India Bistro. Royal India Bistro is one of the best Indian restaurants in Las Vegas, along with Mint Indian Bistro (at 730 E. Flamingo Blvd.) and Mt. Everest India’s Cuisine (at 3641 W. Sahara Ave.).

Royal India Bistro

You’ve probably walked right by. Next time, less walk, more eat. You won’t be disappointed.

Maybe, just maybe, if the restaurant changes at Rio Las Vegas are successful, the resort can take back the large chunk of its casino floor currently being used as a timeshare sales office.

Rio casino timeshare

Sadly, we’re not kidding.

Seriously, though, Rio. What’s next? A pharmacy in the table games pit?

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Interactive Mystery Show, “Alibi Las Vegas,” Pulls Up Stakes Downtown

“Alibi Las Vegas,” a fun, interactive gem of a pub and restaurant crawl is closing up shop, at least in its current location, downtown.

“Alibi” has been operating downtown since November 2014, and is a mash-up of walking tour, improv comedy show and scavenger hunt. Guests work their way through a series of puzzles with the assistance of colorful characters.

Alibi Las Vegas

We aren’t always a fan of interactivity, but in the case of “Alibi,” we’ll make an exception.

While the show’s Executive Producer, Ivan Phillips, feels “Alibi” is a great fit for downtown, he’s also seen the show struggle to find an audience given so many tourists tend to stick to The Strip.

Phillips says pretty much all of the show’s customers are staying on The Strip, and others say they haven’t booked tickets to “Alibi” because they don’t want to pay for the taxi ride downtown.

Phillips also says there have been challenges with ticket brokers who say they won’t sell the show because it’s downtown.

Alibi Las Vegas

Suck it, ticket brokers.

It also didn’t help “Alibi” was booted from the Gold Spike when “Real World” began taping there. Read more.

The business decision, then, was made to move “Alibi Las Vegas” to The Strip, with the first Strip show happening Dec. 5, 2015.

Alibi show Las Vegas

While “Alibi” is moving to The Strip, do not fear. There are still a few colorful characters downtown.

While part of the fun of “Alibi” is the surprise of the various characters and locations, we can spill that the show will feature stops at Pampas Brazilian Grille inside Planet Hollywood, the Harley Davidson Cafe and Hard Rock Cafe (the one near M&M’s World, not the one at Hard Rock).

Find out more about “Alibi Las Vegas” at the show’s official site.

“Alibi” is a great way to get a taste of restaurants and bars while flexing your puzzle-solving abilities. The actors keep things lively, and because they make up much of their dialogue on the spot, no two shows are the same.

We wish “Alibi” all the best with its relocation.

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Vegas Sin Lingerie Football Team a Bust in Sin City

The Legends Football League has pulled the plug on its Las Vegas team, Vegas Sin, at least for now.

The Legends Football League (LFL), of course, is the former Lingerie Football League. The league rebranded itself in 2013, presumably to shift public perception of the LFL away from “attractive, scantily-clad women playing football” to “athleticism exhibited by women who also happen to be attractive and scantily-clad.”

Vegas Sin

In 2013, the LFL’s lingerie was replaced by “performance wear,” which looks a lot like lingerie to the untrained eye. Thanks to Vegas Sin for the pics.

Unfortunately, the Vegas Sin won’t be part of the Legends Football League during its 2016 season. Thanks to our eagle-eyed pal Marc at EdgeVegas for putting us on to this gaping chasm in the LFL’s schedule.

An inquiry with Legends Football League confirmed Vegas Sin will be “suspended” for the 2016 season. The suspension is, in the words of the LFL rep, “due to poor financial model options with prospective host arenas.” Sounds like some drama going on there, but we didn’t get into it.

During the 2015 season, Vegas Sin played its home games in Ontario, California. Fan turnout was “terrible” according to the LFL, although that’s expected given the three-hour-plus drive from Las Vegas.

Vegas Sin football team

In lingerie football, there are no field goals, whatever those might actually be.

The Vegas Sin previously played at the Thomas & Mack Center. The Thomas & Mack is undergoing a $47 million renovation, so that could be part of the dilemma for the Vegas Sin.

It may also be that lingerie football (sorry, performance wear football) faces some interesting challenges in a town where being scantily-clad isn’t an especially unique marketing gimmick.

That said, the LFL holds out hope Vegas Sin will be back, saying, “The Sin are expected to return once an ideal host arena is identified.”

Our thoughts quickly turned to the new Las Vegas Arena, but only time will tell. It’s telling the league has brought back another team, the Dallas Desire, to fill out its roster.

las_vegas_sin4

These uniforms are so unlike lingerie, it’s not even funny.

We wish the players of the Vegas Sin all the best. Sadly, the prospects of gainful employment for young, attractive women in Las Vegas is bleak. If by “bleak,” one means, “it should take them about 14 minutes to find new gigs.”

The LFL rep says, “Many of the star players in Vegas will be competing for roster spots on other 2016 teams.”

Diversification, by the way, may help these women avoid what some claim are LFL’s unfair working conditions.

At the moment, the Vegas Sin’s social media channels like Facebook and Twitter continue to crank out upbeat posts. It’s possible the team hasn’t been informed of the league’s decision yet, which would make this blog post truly awkward, sorry.

While we’ve never attended a Vegas Sin game, we’d probably so if these gorgeous gridiron gladiators return to Las Vegas at some point—to support the athletes, to support the Las Vegas economy and to support our community. We’re civic-minded like that.

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“Showgirls” Slot Machine Does the Impossible and Not in a Good Way

The “Showgirls” slot machine has managed to do what we once thought impossible. It makes the “Showgirls” movie seem downright entertaining by comparison.

Showgirls slot machine

Love gambling? The “Showgirls” slot machine could put a stop to that right quick.

As you no doubt know, “Showgirls” was one of the worst movies of all time.

Nomi Malone (“actress” Elizabeth Berkley) hitches a ride to Las Vegas, performs at a strip club, gets arrested, gives a lap dance, quits the strip club, works a boat show, pushes someone down a flight of stairs, gets a dancing gig at the Stardust, gets blackmailed, beats up a guy and hitches a ride to L.A.

So, Shakespeare, but without the burden of bodices or comprehensible dialogue.

When “Showgirls” came out, it was rightly slammed. But over time, “Showgirls” gained a cult following thanks to it being “so-bad-it’s-good.”

Showgirls slot machine

Nothing says fun like road signs.

Maybe cult status phenomenon will happen with the “Showgirls” slot machine over time, too, but we’re thinking not, mainly because we’d rather watch “Showgirls” again while chewing shards of neon rather than play the machine even one more minute.

Here’s a look at the “Showgirls” slot machine game play. In case you’re suffering from insomnia or something.

The “Showgirls” slot machine is a huge missed opportunity. The slot maker, Australia’s Ainsworth Game Technology, could’ve rocked it by playing up the camp and cheese of the movie.

Instead, the game features unimaginative animation and generic clip art images that appear to have little or nothing to do with the movie upon which the game was presumably based.

Also missing from the “Showgirls” is anything even remotely sexy. So, yeah, that aspect is a lot like the movie.

Showgirls slot machine

“Showgirls” was universally panned, then made $100 million from video rentals. Suck it, good taste, common sense and the craft of screenwriting.

We played $40 on this penny machine and never hit a bonus of any kind. That’s not the best measurement of a slot machine, of course, but if you’re losing money while being bored out of your skull, that’s a measurement worth noting.

As we played, it became apparent the person who designed the “Showgirls” slot machine never saw the movie, and certainly has never had a lap dance in Las Vegas. Or been pushed down a flight of stairs. Which, we should say, would be a lot more fun than this slot machine.

Showgirls slot machine

Nomi Malone works at Cheetah’s strip club, get it?

If you’ve played the “Showgirls” slot machine, let us know what you think. Especially if you disagree with our assessment. That way, we’ll know who to not get a Christmas present.

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Treasure Island to Get Avengers, Transformers Attraction

It’s not the “Sirens of TI,” but it’s something.

Treasure Island is getting a new attraction, an exhibit featuring Marvel’s Avengers and Hasbro’s Transformers.

The exhibit will open in early 2016 and take up residence on the second and third floors of an industrial park-inspired tumor currently housing a CVS drugstore attached to a once-whimsical Treasure Island.

Treasure Island

Not that we have strong feelings about the CVS or anything.

The new Avengers and Transformers exhibit, described as “immersive,” as all new attractions in Las Vegas must be by law, will be created by Victory Hill Exhibitions.

The building’s second floor will focus on the world of The Transformers, and the Avengers exhibit will be on the top floor. The second floor will feature an Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N. (Scientific Training Tactical Intelligence Operative Network). Read more.

Here’s a peek at the Avengers portion of the new exhibit, formerly in display at Discovery Times Square. See more pics.

Treasure Island Avengers exhibit

We’re way ahead of you in our pining for Star Trek: The Experience.

The Transformers exhibit is still in the works and will be a Las Vegas exclusive. The “Chief Creative Officer” of Victory Hill says the Transformers exhibit will include a three-story tall Optimus Prime. Inside one story of a three-story building. Look, Las Vegas attractions aren’t about “facts” or “accuracy,” they’re about spectacle and hyperbole! Just play along.

Treasure Island Avengers

Las Vegas connection: Tony Stark was based upon Howard Hughes. Hughes’ purchase of the Desert Inn casino began the process of ridding Las Vegas of organized crime.

Victory Hill has been given an exceedingly optimistic 10-year lease at Treasure Island.

Victory Hill Exhibitions was “recently acquired by Star Media Group’s subsidiary, Singapore-listed Cityneon Holdings Ltd.,” and is “a 100% subsidiary of a main-board company with the Singapore Stock Exchange,” whatever that might actually mean.

Victory Hill Exhibitions

Eh, grand openings are boring, anyway.

All we know is the new Avengers and Transformers attraction has got to be more interesting than two more floors of pharmacy, so we’re all for it.

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